Plans by Rocco Homes to add twelve storeys of flats on top of the old Tudor Williams shop in New Malden high street should be given short shrift by Kingston Council according to a local Conservative councillor.
Currently, the plans to replace the old Tudor Williams department store with a tall block of flats with retail on the ground floor, are being consulted on locally by the developer. Online webinars are planned for December, with a planning application expected in February.
However, LibDem-run Kingston Council is being asked how such ‘clearly unsuitable and over-the-top’ plans could even reach this stage.
Cllr Ian George, a Conservative neighbourhood councillor, said: “These plans are quite clearly unsuitable for the area and the proposed over-the-top height is an insult to local residents. The Lib Dems at Kingston Council should be much firmer with initial feedback to developers seeking to overdevelop sites in Kingston upon Thames. The Lib Dems seem to be steering the developers to what might be acceptable and they’re just encouraging ridiculously tall and dense proposals.”
“The developer is being cheeky in using taller buildings near the train station as a precedent for such tall towers in the heart of New Malden High Street. The much-loved Tudor Williams department store is sorely missed, and it’s important that the site is developed in a responsible manner. I’ve no problem with retail space on the ground floor and some flats above, as that’s quite normal for the area. However, we don’t need greedy developers defacing our High Street, then leaving local residents to live with the fallout. Kingston Council needs to be much more proactive with their initial advice to prevent this. Let’s send out the message that irresponsible, greedy developers will not be tolerated here.”